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 Ethel Edwards  (1915 - 1999)

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Lived/Active: Massachusetts/Texas/New York/Louisiana      Known for: collage, abstraction, mural paintings

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Ad Code: 3
Ethel Edwards
from Auction House Records.
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, Ethel Edwards was a painter, collage artist and muralist who studied at Newcomb College in New Orleans with Xavier Gonzalez, whom she married in 1935 in Alpine, Texas, where Xavier Gonzalez had conducted a summer art colony for several years. They continued the summer art school for several years until Xavier took a leave of absence to live in France.

From 1942 to 1949, the couple lived in New York City and spent summers at Wellfleet, Massachusetts on Cape Cod.  She taught at the Art Students League, and also did extensive traveling in the Orient, which influenced her artwork in that she created collages with sumi or Japanese black ink and Japanese rice paper. "The cutouts reportedly had the appearance of ritual forms or hieroglyphs colored orange, gold, silver and black, the whole amounting to a blend of sculpture and painting." (Powers 154).

Exhibition venues included the National Academy of Design, the Whitney Museum, and the El Paso Museum of Art, where she had a joint exhibition with Xavier Gonzalez in 1965. Her murals are at the US Post Offices in Lampasas, Texas and Providence, Louisiana.

John and Deborah Powers, Texas Painters, Sculptors, & Graphic Artists
Peter Hastings Falk (editor), Who Was Who in American Art
Additional information and corrections courtesy of Bruce Edwards
Note June 2004 from Jill Epstein:

Ethel Edwards passed away a few years ago. She was married to Xavier Gonzales. She taught figure drawing at The Art Students League in New York and Castle Hill at Truro Center for The Arts on Cape Cod in Truro, Massachusetts.

She was an active participant with the Bohemian group of artists in New York City in the 1940's. There is a painting in one of Raphael Soyers' books of Ethel and Xavier.

She shared her time between New York City and Wellfleet, Massachusetts. Ethel had a signature outfit she wore which was black tights and a black tunic. Her style of drawing and painting had a definite eastern influence. She was a wonderful encouraging teacher, who helped her students paint and draw with an awareness of spirit.

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